Emetophilia is a sexual fetish in which an individual is aroused by seeing other people vomit. And the largest congregation of emotophiliacs in the world assemble annually for Wing Bowl, hoping that their perverted desires are met by gargantuan wing-eaters and scantily clad strippers. These emetophiliacs are predominately angry men embittered by a lifetime of following Philadelphia sports teams (I am going to coin a new term here: emeto-masochists). A smattering of scantily clad sirens, hoping to get a quick rush of self esteem by exposing their greatest assets, populate the arena as well.
I arrived on the high one gets by staying up all night with friends, ready to tackle a new and unusual experience, combined with a fair amount of alcohol. We entered the arena, and as our buzzes wore off, our eyelids began to gain weight. That is because Wing Bowl is a 15 minute event stretched into a 2 ½ hour spectacle. The contestants’ lap around the arena floor takes an interminable amount of time. The first couple of guys to enter gain a fair amount of attention due to their scantily clad escorts, who occasionally satisfy the crowd’s incessant chants of “Show your wrists*!” It is initially amusing, but after you’ve seen the first eight pairs of fake wrists, you’ve seen them all.
Then as the crowd begins to to doze off, the Jumbotron displays the highlight of the 2001 Wing Bowl, when a losing contestant released a torrent of vomit that rivaled anything you emitted on your most drunken night of college. And the crowd goes wild, their emetophilian desires met.
I began to fall asleep, until a fan angrily screamed at to “Wake the heck up**!” (Apparently, I was sullying the integrity fo the event by falling asleep.) And so I awoke to what seemed like Dante’s seventh level of hell: slothful men, surrounded by women of vice, cheered on by the types of people who root for career ending injuries in football games, my faith in humanity irreparably damaged.
*Ok, so they were chanting something that sort of sounds like wrists. And the guy next to me chanted this at least 400 times, without ever uttering another sentence.
**He did not use the word “Heck.”